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Element::Clinical Rounds Routine maintenance, problems, solutions and repair

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Old 01-13-2005, 06:00 AM
larkinmj larkinmj is offline
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Location: Jamestown, RI USA
Posts: 195
Default Second windshield crack?

Has anyone else experienced TWO cracked windshields yet? I have a 2003 EX, which I bought in Jan 2003 (two years now!). In October 2003, I developed one of the famous windshield cracks, which the dealer repaired under the Honda service bulletin. Yesterday morning, I got in my car, and there was a crack, beginning slightly to the right of center at the bottom and then going horizontally 2 to 3 inches from the bottom. As I was driving to work (going over a bridge, in snow changing to freezing rain), I watched in horror as the crack spread! I had visions of the windshield imploding in my face. The crack was 32" inches long at last observation. I took it to my local Honda dealer, who said it would be repaired under warranty.
Now I suppose any windshield can develop a stress crack, but presumably when they replaced the windshield the first time they would have corrected the problem with the flanges that supposedly was the cause of all the cracks in '03 Elements.

Mike L.
2003 Honda Element EX 4WD
Galapagos Green
2005 Honda Pilot EX-L RES
Sage Brush Pearl
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Old 01-16-2005, 01:45 PM
pvanbaelen pvanbaelen is offline
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Join Date: May 2004
Posts: 5
Default Maybe the windshields are weak

I think maybe the windshields are just weak. I just cracked mine today, an '04 with 5500 miles on it. I hit a rock on the freeway and there is a noticeable mark in the windshield and then 3 inches out from that there is a 8 inch semi-circle crack. First windshield I ever cracked and I've been driving since the mid-70's.

I was hit by a rock comparably in my old Astro Van and while it chipped the windshield it didn't crack. It seems like it's a combination of inherent stress, weak glass and maybe the windshield angle.

Wonder how much it's going to cost........
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Old 01-16-2005, 03:32 PM
hondaone hondaone is offline
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Default you're lucky

just be lucky your dealer replaces yours under warranty. at the cost of saving my blood pressure, I have given up trying to get honda to replace mine.
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Old 01-16-2005, 05:52 PM
paulj paulj is offline
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Posts: 596

Come on guys - if a rock hits your windshield there is a good chance that it is going to produce a crack, especially if the impact is in the lower part of the windshield. That is a given for ALL cars!

There is also a strong randomness to this whole rock and windshield business. You could drive 30 years without a rock hit and crack. Or you could get 3 hits in one year.

At the moment I own 3 cracked windshields. My 16yr old pickup is on its 2nd windshield, has had a stable crack near the top for years, and now has a spreading crack further down. My 7 yr old RAV4 is also on its 2nd windshield. Both of its cracks occured near the wipers, and both spread rapidly once cold weather and defroster use arrived. The Element has several rock induced cracks, but only one has spread.

But maybe I'm the exception. Other Element owners must live rock free lives, so only the only possible causes of cracks are frame flaws, stress and weak glass.

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Old 01-18-2005, 11:19 AM
sillig sillig is offline
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Location: N.Stonington,CT,USA
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Default Cracked windshields

[I have a late 2003 and my daughter has an early 2004 element. Both cracked their windshields in exactly the same place. Lower left hand corner just under the drivers line of sight. The cracks extend 1/4 of the way across the windshield. Both windshields cracked when the car was sitting unused. The cracks start from the very edge of the windshield under the rubber gasket...this is how you tell a stress crack. Honda will fight you tooth and nail telling you its a rock hit....tell them to pound sand and make a lot of noise when other customers are present...they will fix it.
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Old 01-26-2005, 07:32 PM
Anonymous Anonymous is offline
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Join Date: Apr 2002
Posts: 16,755

mine was exactly there the edge of the windshield in the lower left hand corner starting beyond the molding....i have a 03 and even went to the dealer with tsb in hand. after two technicians said it was probably a stress crack the service manager ruled it out blaming it on a "pebble"., they could not point the origin of the crack by pen or microscope. honda corporate sided with the dealer, and i even got a third party windshield manuf. involved and they ruled out any stones/cracks. Honda corp said they could not take their opinion into account, even though they subcontract jobs to them on a daily basis. This all was over a year ago, and i love my element just gave up on the dealer replacing it. Funny thing was I always refer service managers to the element forums, and they always say don't believe everything you read..
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Old 02-12-2005, 02:18 PM
Anonymous Anonymous is offline
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Default Element windshield

My dealer told me they had to bend a piece of metal down further than the factory did. They found mine when I complained of the noise it was making and managed to fix it without loosing the windshield
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Old 04-02-2005, 01:16 PM
808element 808element is offline
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Location: Honolulu
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There is techincal service bulletin #03-028 for the windshield problem. If your vin# falls under this, it should be considered under warranty repair. This the info on this problem and symptoms:

Applies To:
2003 Element 2WD - From VIN 5J6YH1...3L000001 thru 5J6YH1...3L009372
2003 Element 4WD - From VIN 5J6YH2...3L000001 thru 5J6YH2...3L022888

2003 Element: Windshield Is Cracked at the Lower Corners

Cracks in the windshield at the lower corner(s).

The windshield flange surface is uneven.

Remove the high spots on the windshield flange, and replace the windshield.

In warranty:
The normal warranty applies.

Operation Number: 831120

Flat Rate Time: 1.7 hours

Failed Part: P/N 73111-SCV-A00
H/C 7285471

Defect Code: 017

Contention Code: A99

Template ID: 03-028A

Skill Level: Repair Technician

Out of warranty:
Any repair performed after warranty expiration may be eligible for goodwill consideration by the District Parts and Service Manager or your Zone Office. You must request consideration, and get a decision, before starting work.
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